Sunday, February 19, 2012


Check out this video that I made about the B17. Hope it helps. It sure helps me remember all the B17's.

Here's the link.

Friday, January 27, 2012

The Altitude Crazies

In June 2011, I travelled to Ecuador for a humanitarian trip with Me to We. Before the trip, I was told that the altitude may affect me as I would not be used to the amount of oxygen in the air. On earth, we all live under an ocean of air. At sea level, the weight of the air compresses oxygen down, therefore at sea level there is more oxygen. 21% of air is oxygen, at all altitudes, but as the altitude increases, the density of air decreases, therefore there is less of "everything". Less nitrogen, oxygen and carbon dioxide, even though the percentage of each of these gases remain the same.
I experienced the change of altitude first-hand as I travelled the Andes with 20 other youth from Canada and United-States. Here, at home, in the Gaspesie, I am always active, biking or running, so I thought I would be fine in Ecuador, even with the altitude change. However, when I got there, I realized I was completely wrong. At our first stop in Ecuador, in the capital, Quito, my first encounter with the change in altitude was walking up the steps in our hostel. I was out of breath by the third step. I was so shocked. Quito is 2800m high in altitude. And we were only going higher.

When we went to the rural communities of Ecuador, 4000m and higher, a couple of people got sick, they were too weak, and too tired to function, for a couple days. The lack of oxygen affected many people during this trip but after a few days of rest, they were fine. However, in the community that we were building the school, every night the locals would invite to play soccer. It was the death of everyone. Running after the ball in 4000 m of altitude is the hardest thing ever. At some points after sprinting after the ball, I thought I was going have a heart attack. My lungs were so desperate for oxygen, it was actually painful. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Optical Illusions in Art.

These optical illusions are amazing. However, if the artist,Julian Beever, does not use math to create these extremely realistic illusions, I'm a monkeys uncle. These illusions are so realistic that often pedestrians on the street swerve to avoid the seemingly dangerous holes in the ground. The angles implicated in these art pieces must so precise that it can only be assumed that math plays a big role in these chalk creations.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


I love photography. It has been my hobby for a couple years, therefore I have had a little time to figure out how my SLR camera works. Although I did not read the user's manuel I have figured a few cool things out and realized the lens of my camera works similarly to our eyes. Both our eyes and use convex lenses to perceive the image. The eye uses its retina while the camera uses film to detect the image. 

The way the camera reacts to light is very similar to the way our eyes do. With a camera, the exposure triangle is what deems how the camera should react to its environment, to the picture it is taking. This exposure triangle is comprised of ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed. The ISO is the camera's sensitivity to light, which varies form one camera to the next. The aperture is the size of the opening of the lens when the picture is taken. The shutter speed is the amount of time the camera remains open. On a sunny day, the aperture would be higher, which means the camera lens opening would be smaller, which means that less light would enter the camera, which is needed on a bright and sunny day. The lower the shutter speed, the less time the lens remains open. This ranges from up to 30 seconds to 1/4000 of a second. On a sunny day, a smaller shutter speed would be preferable, if not, the picture will just be blob of brightness.
Like this:

Our eyes do the same thing, our pupils dilate according to the light in our environment so that we can see.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Leonardo Da Vinci: Mathematical Artist

Leonardo Da Vinci is known world-wide for his incredible art and his inventions that plunge him ahead of his time. Although he lived in the 14th century, he sketched amazingly accurate prototypes of machines that have inspired the modern-day inventors to produce similar gadget. Some examples are helicopters and war tanks.

However, the mind of Leonardo Da Vinci does not stop there. The artist made mathematical discoveries of nature and the human body that are still studied today. In his painting the "Vitruvian Man", Leo demonstrates the perfection of the human body.

Leonardo believed in the divinity of the human body, something he considered perfection. This sketch proves that the human body can be symmetrically inscribed in both a square and a circle. The Vitruvius man's limbs reach the sides of the square and the circumference of the circle, the navel is the centre. The circle is especially important as it is a symbol of divinity. Da Vinci was a believer in the divine proportions of the body in architecture, and this sketch definitely shows it.

The divine proportions lead us to the one we find everywhere in nature. PHI. It is the ratio to which everything is built around. 1.618. This ration defines growth and patterns. The number of female bees vs the number of male bees in a hive.The spirals of a sunflowers seeds. Leaf arrangement on a branch. And also in the human body. Distance from the tip of your head to the floor divided by the distance from your belly button to the floor is equal to 1.618. Distance from your should to your fingertips divided by the distance between your elbow to your fingertips. Hip to floor divided by knee to floor. Everything in the body is created based on this proportion. Try it yourself!!!

You guys may have heard of all this before, of course, in the Da Vinci Code, one of the coolest books ever that will get you hooked on math in art.